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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 March 2006, 20:07 GMT
Hospital cuts jobs to wipe debts
New Cross Hospital
New Cross is the third hospital in a week to announce job cuts
Three hundred jobs are to be cut in the West Midlands by a hospitals trust in a bid to save 8m.

The New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton is 37m in debt and bosses hope the cuts can be made by natural wastage.

But they said compulsory redundancies cannot be ruled out, although it has said some jobs could be saved if staff agree to a wage freeze.

David Loughton, chief executive of the Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust said patients will not be affected.

However, Dave Brooks of the Unison union, has claimed the proposed cuts will affect the public.

Previous cuts

Mr Loughton told BBC WM the trust had given some "very very significant" rises to staff in recent years and now it was time for "faster and smarter" working.

In a statement, he told the staff: "It is difficult, at this stage, to be precise with regard to the headcount reduction required.

"But it is believed that this will be in the order of 300 and at this stage it is hoped to achieve this reduction by natural wastage.

"This may or may not be possible and there may need to be compulsory redundancies."

The cuts at Wolverhampton follow 1,000 job losses announced last week at Stoke-on-Trent and another 300 at Shropshire hospitals on Monday.

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